Why I make Household Spray Cleaner, and how you can too.
You will have read about the chemicals contained in household cleaning products, and how we should use fewer of them to reduce the amount of chemicals in our living space.
Why make your own Household Spray Cleaner?
Firstly, I'm not here to lecture anyone or to claim to be an expert. Cleaning products containing chemicals is probably a given, and there are many chemicals which are entirely harmless. I try not to get hysterical about such things, after all, an everyday product like salt is a chemical. And some of the ingredients in your homemade cleaner will be the same as the active ingredients in those you buy. But some of them won't be.
There is mounting evidence that antibacterial soaps and gels are no more effective than soap, and may do more harm than good. Besides, there are two other compelling reasons to make your own citrus household spray cleaner. Decluttering, and cost.
Help to Declutter your Home
If you wonder how making your own spray cleaner helps to declutter your home, you only have to open your cupboard under the sink. Or wherever your storage area of choice for cleaning products happens to be. If you're like I used to be, there are bazillions of products, all for different cleaning jobs. Because they have individual uses, unless you are an obsessive cleaning-product-user they can take months to run out. So you can never get rid of all the bottles, and you always need somewhere to store them all. This homemade Citrus Household Spray Cleaner will eliminate a lot of the antibacterial sprays (different ones for bathrooms and kitchens - why?) and floor cleaners cluttering up your cupboards.
Another benefit is the cost. This spray cleaner costs pennies to make. Once you've bought all the ingredients (some of which will already by in your storecupboard) you can make dozens and dozens of batches of household cleaner for very low cost.
This cleaner works brilliantly in the bathroom, kitchen and on floors. It also smells lovely which is an added bonus. Don't worry about your house smelling of vinegar by the way. Even if you can smell it when you first spray (I can't), it disappears very quickly leaving a nice fresh, citrus scent. Besides all this, it takes a couple of minutes to make. Less time probably than it takes you to find that super-extra-mega-cleaning-spray stuff in the supermarket because they keep moving it. What's not to like?
What is Borax?
Borax is a mineral found all around the world. It is often contained in cleaning, laundry, hair products, skin lotions and garden products. It is sodium tetraborate, a boron mineral and salt. It is mined directly from the ground.
Borax is not the same as boric acid (which is another can of worms altogether). Borax is classified as non-carcinogenic and can be a mild skin irritant in large quantities.
This cleaner recipe does not contain a large amount of Borax. If you don't like the idea of using it, leave it out. Incidentally if you prefer to use another essential oil such as lavender or tea tree, feel free. I use 500ml plastic spray bottles which are widely available. If your bottle is bigger, increase the ingredients accordingly. Though I don't think it's that scientific to be honest, the basic mix still works brilliantly even when the amounts vary slightly in each batch.
Homemade Household Spray Cleaner - Recipe
6 tablespoons Distilled White Vinegar
2 tablespoons Liquid Castille Soap
1 tablespoon lemon juice Half tablespoon Borax or Borax Substitute(or leave out if you prefer)
20 drops Grapefruit Essential Oil
Simply add all the ingredients to your spray bottle.
I use a funnel as it's the easiest way to ensure everything goes in the bottle first time. Then top up with hot water from the tap (not boiling - that would probably melt your spray bottle unless it's glass).
Swirl it around a bit until all the ingredients are incorporated together. And that's it. Grab a cloth, get cleaning and enjoy having one homemade product for lots of jobs around the house! The cleaner stores indefinitely, though the fragrance diminishes over time. If you want to give it boost, just add a few more drops of essential oil.
Incidentally, I make the bar soap we use in our house. I'm working on being able to make the liquid castille soap contained in this cleaner also.
Watch this space for how to do that.
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